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By Dr Deanna Barbaro

URRICANE CLEAN-UPWe survived a huge hurricane! As we came out from our homes or returned from evacuation, we all enjoyed relief that our home was not swept away. Yet, when we looked around and saw the debris, we mentally echoed a combined sigh of anticipated exhaustion at the major task of clean-up. There was a lot of work to be done!

Whether it is your own yard, or it is your job to clean someone else’s yard, debris removal and clearing up fallen tree limbs can take a toll on the body. Awkward twisting, bending, lifting and even worse – lifting while bending and twisting causes many to have severe neck pain or back spasm. Those with weakened spines due to old injuries may have felt the comeback of low back pain and its friend: sciatica.

What can a chiropractor do?
Painkillers and muscle relaxants may give temporary relief from the dreaded pain however, spinal misalignments must be evaluated properly. Your chiropractor is trained specifically to locate and free your body from subluxation. Subluxation is a misalignment or distortion to your structure that affects pressure on your discs and thereby pressure on your nerves which weaken the area. The required bending, lifting and twisting required for debris clean up exacerbates the area causing more pressure on nerves sending pain signals throughout.

Misalignments in the low back and hips lead to weakness. Weakness can lead to injury, especially with heavy-duty yardwork. Pain is not the usual indicator for misalignment and due to this, most subluxations go unnoticed. Oftentimes by the time you feel pain, the misalignment has been there for a while. They can usually be seen by X-ray technology. Doctors who practice Chiropractic Biophysics locate these areas of subluxation through X-Ray which enables her to accurately identify and correct these misalignments.

Think Prevention
To prevent unnecessary strain and pain, consider some simple tips before you get started. The American Chiropractic Association provides these tips for yardwork safety:
• Wear supportive shoes. Good foot and arch support can prevent some back strain.
• Stand as straight as possible, and keep your head up as you rake or mow.
• When it’s still warm outside, avoid the heat. If you’re a morning person, get the work done before 10 a.m. Otherwise, do your chores after 6 p.m.
• When raking, use a “scissors” stance: right foot forward and left foot back for a few minutes, then reverse, putting your left foot forward and right foot back.
• Bend at the knees, not the waist, as you pick up yard equipment or piles of leaves or grass from the grass catcher. Make the piles small to decrease the possibility of back strain.
• Wear a hat, shoes and protective glasses. To avoid blisters, try wearing gloves. If you have asthma or allergies, wear a mask.
• Drink lots of water before and after your work.

Get Effective Relief
Chiropractors have helped millions of people with neck and back problems, often saving them from pain, disability, drugs and surgery. Once identified, it is our goal to gently and painlessly rebalance and realign your spine thereby relieving pressure on your nerves, discs and muscles. Dr. Deanna Barbaro uses Chiropractic Biophysics and a variety of techniques to identify biomechanical causes of weakness and misalignment to focus on correction of your spine. This is not a band-aid approach to your symptoms, but a precise plan of correction based on your unique spine and your unique X-Rays. Your spine can be realigned and strengthened so your back and neck are prepared for potential stressors in the future.

Dr Deanna Barbaro is the chiropractor at A Better Life Chiropractic – 661 Goodlette Rd N Ste 108; Naples, FL 34102. Call (239) 263-3369 or visit for more information on her office and techniques.

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